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Ben McAdoo, New York Giants (August 20, 2016)

Ben McAdoo – © USA TODAY Sports Images

SUNDAY BEN MCADOO CONFERENCE CALL…
New York Giants Head Coach Ben McAdoo addressed the media by conference call on Sunday to discuss the team’s 21-0 preseason loss to the Buffalo Bills. Coach McAdoo provided an injury update on wide receiver Dwayne Harris (knee) and provided an update on a few injured Giants who missed the game.

McAdoo: Good afternoon, we’ll start out with what we did well in the game. Defensively, I thought the first 15 plays, first quarter or so, there was some tremendous effort and physicality present on tape. Offensively, we improved our pocket integrity. From a special teams perspective, the punt team, our protection was good, releases and coverage patterns were good. We did a nice job pinning them down in their own territory a few times.

What we need to improve defensively, we need to continue building towards playing a full game the first week in Dallas and our sudden change stops. Offensively, we have to do a better job taking care of The Duke, our run blocking unit needs to improve assignments, fundamentals, and physicality. We made some progress with our long-stride, short-stride but we still have some work to do there.

The penalties really put us in bad situations, we had 10 penalties in the ballgame, and it put us behind the chains on offense. It gave them some first downs defensively and negatively changed the field on us on on special teams. Where do we go from here? We’ve got a lot of work to do, so we need to set our jaw and get back to work. We’re going to have plenty of opportunity this week to develop our fundamentals, physicality and building up for the first game. We’ve seen some great things in practice that haven’t carried over to the games yet, but we still have some work to do.

Q: What did you see from your first team offensive line and tight ends?

A: I think, just like I said earlier,  I think it’s time its fundamentals and physicality need to pick up.

Q: What can you do to improve the physicality in practice?

A:  I think there’s some signs in practice, the half-line drill, and the 9-on-8 and 8-on-7, the physicality is there and it shows up. We have to carry that over and we have to keep working on it in practice and carry it over and it’s got to show up on game day. A lot of the things, and a lot of the mistakes that we’re making, we’re not making in practice, we just need to have the confidence to carry those over to game day.

Q: Will there be any immediate personnel changes, in regards to first teams?

A: We’re going to give guys opportunities to compete, but at the same point in time we’re not going to have any knee-jerk reactions, no one’s panicking here. We’re not going to rush to judgement on anything. We’re going to go out there, we’re going to get the pads on and we’re going to get to work.

Q: Is Victor Cruz going to practice tomorrow?

A:  Yes.

Q: What’s the plan with him in general?

A: We’re going to put him back out there. He got some work in today, as he did in the pregame yesterday. We’re going to put him back out there and we’re going to let him work back into it.

Q: Can you describe what tomorrow’s practice is going to entail?

A:  Tomorrow’s practice will be, we’re just bringing them back off of a game, we’ll get some conditioning in early in the practice and get a jump start on the next opponent and the corrections.

Q: Tuesday will be the first real, true football practice?

A:  Yes… we want to take them through a mock game week.

Q: Do you expect Victor Cruz to have limitations?

A:  We’re going to put him out there, we’re going to practice. If we have to limit him, then we’ll limit him. If not, he’s going to go.

Q: Any update on Dwayne Harris?

A: Dwayne Harris had an MRI on his knee. His knee checked out fine. I think he is a little bit sore, so we will take a look at him when he gets here tomorrow. He did have some treatment today.

Q: How about the other guys who traveled but didn’t play? Are Pugh and Apple going to go this week?

A: Yeah, we are going to put – Justin is going to jump back in and Eli will jump back in with individual and we will progress from there.

Q: How much do you think Ryan Nassib’s struggles these past two games have been mental and how much do you think have been physical?

A: It is probably a combination of both. I still have confidence in Ryan. I know he can go out there and play at a high level. We need to run the ball better around him and he needs to make some throws and then we need to make some plays. We can’t be dropping balls out there, and we need to protect him.

Q: Do you intend to bring in any other kickers to compete for the Week 1 job, or are you still giving Tom Obarski every opportunity to get that job?

A: Yeah, you never say never. I haven’t had time to sit down, I just talked about the game with Jerry (Reese), but I haven’t had time to sit down and talk about those things, but you never say never.

Q: Are you any closer to deciding who your middle linebacker is going to be?

A: There is a good competition going on right now. B.J. (Goodson) made a good push yesterday, but Kelvin (Sheppard)  and Jasper (Brinkley) are battling it out.

Q: What did you see from Sheppard and Jasper yesterday?

A: Kelvin, again, he is an instinctive guy and has a good nose for the ball. That showed up again yesterday. He communicates and he gets football. Jasper had a nice play on the screen, they tried to run a ladder screen there versus a pressure and he blew it up and made a nice play. That was a big play for us.

Q: How did you like Tavarres King running with the first team offense?

A: Tavarres did some good things. He ran a nice slant route. I would like to see him leave a little more room on the go on the sideline, but Tavarres has had a nice camp and he is a guy that is earning the trust and confidence of the quarterbacks and it was good to get him out there running early.

Q: What did you think of how Bobby Hart did?

A: Bobby got better. He got better playing inside and playing tackle. Again, we need to see more consistency from him, but he is a guy that stepped up, jumped in when his number was called and he did improve.

Q: Where does Orleans Darkwa stand in the grand scheme of the running backs at the moment?

A: Yeah, Orleans is a guy that has value for us as a back and a special teamer. We wanted to make sure that we are doing our due diligence evaluating the entire roster, so he didn’t get as many snaps yesterday. His work load will have a chance to pick up here shortly.

Q: You had an opportunity to look at the tape. I know you mentioned that Paul Perkins needed to get over there quicker on that blitz pick up. Has anything changed with that?

A: There was an adjustment made. He needs to come over and block the nickel and he had a penalty which there is no excuse for from a back. He had a rough day yesterday. He has got to rebound.

Q: How much of that is just a typical thing for a rookie? Is that usually the hardest thing you consider for a rookie running back to pick up?

A: Yeah, protections are a challenge. No question about it, and especially when you are making adjustments, you are on the road and you are playing a defense that is multiple, it magnifies the issues, but listen, Paul is going to be just fine. He needs to come in, he needs to work at it, he needs to work on his mistakes like everyone else and he needs to improve.

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Aug 202016
 
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Eli Manning, New York Giants (August 20, 2016)

Eli Manning – © USA TODAY Sports Images

BUFFALO BILLS 21 – NEW YORK GIANTS 0…
The New York Giants were shutout by the Buffalo Bills 21-0 at New Era Field in Orchard Park, New York on Saturday. The Giants are now 0-2 in the preseason under new Head Coach Ben McAdoo.

The offense was pathetic, accruing only 166 total net yards, 64 net passing yards, and seven first downs. And 67 of those yards came on one run by back-up running back Bobby Rainey in the 4th quarter. In four series, the starting offense gained only 23 net yards and one first down. Both pass and run blocking was terrible and the Giants turned the football over four times. The only time the offense seriously threatened – in the fourth quarter – kick Tom Obarski missed a 27-yard field goal.

The individual offensive stats also tell a horrific story.

Eli Manning completed 4-of-9 passes for 44 yards, Ryan Nassib 2-of-12 passes for 25 yards and one lost fumble, and Logan Thomas 2-of-4 passes for 17 yards and two interceptions. Rainey had 70 yards rushing (with 67 yards coming on one late run). Four other running backs carried the ball 14 times for 29 yards with one lost fumble (by Andre Williams).

The Bills scored all of their points in the first half, with their scoring drives starting from the Bills 48-yard line, Giants 49-yard line, and Giants 19-yard line – the latter coming after Nassib’s fumble with 24 seconds left before halftime. Overall, the Giants defense allowed 343 total net yards (70 rushing and 273 passing) with 216 of those yards coming in the first half.

Safety Landon Collins saved more humiliation when he forced a fumble on 3rd-and-goal from the 1-yard line in the first quarter. The ball was recovered by defensive tackle Damon Harrison in the end zone. Cornerback/safety Cooper Taylor also intercepted a pass in the fourth quarter. Cornerback Janoris Jenkins, defensive end Olivier Vernon, and defensive end Romeo Okwara each had sacks.

Video lowlights are available at Giants.com.

INJURY REPORT…
Not playing were WR Victor Cruz (groin), WR Geremy Davis (hamstring – did not make trip), TE Will Johnson (burner – did not make trip), LG Justin Pugh (shoulder), DE Kerry Wynn (groin – did not make trip), LB J.T. Thomas (hamstring – on the PUP – did not make trip), CB Eli Apple (strained leg muscle), and CB Leon McFadden (bruised lower leg – did not make trip).

WR Dwayne Harris (knee, x-rays were negative) and S Mykkele Thompson (concussion) were injured in the game. No word yet on the severity of the injuries or how much time either will miss.

POST-GAME REACTIONS…
Transcripts and video clips of post-game media sessions with Head Coach Ben McAdoo and the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

  • Head Coach Ben McAdoo (Video)
  • QB Eli Manning (Video)
  • RT Marshall Newhouse (Video)
  • OL Bobby Hart (Video)
  • DE Olivier Vernon (Video)
  • S Darian Thompson (Video)

ARTICLES…

Aug 202016
 
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Aug 192016
 
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Weston Richburg, New York Giants (August 12 2016)

Weston Richburg – © USA TODAY Sports Images

Game Preview: New York Giants at Buffalo Bills, August 20, 2016

THE STORYLINE:
Normally the two most important preseason games for the starters in terms of regular-season preparation are the third and second preseason games. Minus a number of injured starters, we should get a much better impression of the starting offensive and defensive units this week. In addition, Rex Ryan usually takes preseason games more seriously.

THE INJURY REPORT:

  • LB J.T. Thomas (hamstring – on the PUP – did not make trip)
  • WR Victor Cruz (groin)
  • WR Geremy Davis (hamstring – did not make trip)
  • TE Will Johnson (burner – did not make trip)
  • LG Justin Pugh (shoulder)
  • DE Kerry Wynn (groin – did not make trip)
  • CB Eli Apple (strained leg muscle)
  • CB Leon McFadden (bruised lower leg – did not make trip)

NEW YORK GIANTS ON OFFENSE:
This week the Giants offense will benefit from the addition of its two best players: Eli Manning and Odell Beckham. Unfortunately, the clock is ticking on Victor Cruz and the coaching staff must now operate under the assumption that Cruz will not be a factor for at least the first part of the season and perhaps beyond. Making matters worse is that the favorite to replace Cruz in three-wide receiver sets – Geremy Davis – has been missing valuable practice and now game time with a hamstring injury. Keep in mind that Davis is still pretty darn green.

So the attention really shifts to other green receivers such as Tavarres King, Roger Lewis, and Darius Powe – three who didn’t get much of a chance to impress last week due to crappy quarterbacking from Ryan Nassib. Unless one of these three or Myles White shines and gains the trust of Ben McAdoo and Eli Manning, the third receiver on opening day may remain Dwayne Harris. In this offense, the third receiver is a de facto starter.

On the running back front, it appears Rashad Jennings is 1a and Shane Vereen 1b. Paul Perkins will also make the 53-man roster. Bobby Rainey played earlier than expected last week. He’s vying with Andre Williams and Orleans Darkwa for possibly one roster spot. Personally, I’d like to see a heavy dose of Williams and Darkwa in order to get a better read on those two.

At tight end, Larry Donnell and Will Tye seem to be locks. Matt LaCosse has received a lot of attention from the coaches but he’s battling the ultra versatile Will Johnson (who is out this game) and rookie draft pick Jerell Adams for a roster spot. The Giants may keep four tight ends, but someone has to go other than Ryan Malleck unless the Giants ditch Nikita Whitlock and use Johnson at fullback too.

Justin Pugh (shoulder) made the trip but it is unknown if he will play. If he doesn’t, Bobby Hart will have a busy night, playing with the first-unit at left guard and then the second-unit at right tackle. The starters remain pretty much set. What we don’t know is – other than Hart – who the back-ups will be. There are a bunch of journeymen no-names in this group who have yet to inspire a lot of confidence. Depth on the offensive line is a serious concern.

On a final note, Ryan Nassib simply stunk last week. He’s a lock to make the roster, but he has to play with a lot more confidence and credibility.

NEW YORK GIANTS ON DEFENSE:
The early returns with the starting unit were impressive last week, but that was only one game against a suspect offense. That said, if the Giants defensive line performs as well as it did last week throughout this upcoming season, the Giants are in good shape. The front was tough against the run and able to pressure the passer without bringing extra rushers. That’s huge.

The Giants also appear to have a nice battle brewing at back-up defensive end. Owamagbe Odighizuwa and Romeo Okwara not only flashed as pass rushers, but they showed a great deal of versatility by being able to play defensive tackle in pass-rush situations. Kerry Wynn – who was doing some nice things at camp before getting hurt – has missed a lot of time with a groin injury. Even Stansly Maponga and Mike Rose have flashed some.

Depth at defensive tackle behind Damon Harrison and Johnathan Hankins is more shaky. Jay Bromley is finally back after late offseason ankle surgery. The Giants very much need him to come into his own this year. Greg Milhouse, Jermelle Cudjo, Davon Coleman, Louis Nix, and Montori Hughes are probably battling for one roster spot.

It’s still not known who the Giants middle linebacker and principle defensive front-seven signal-caller will be on opening night. Kelvin Sheppard and Jasper Brinkley are the leading contenders. Jonathan Casillas has taken full advantage of J.T. Thomas’ (hamstring) absence and appears firmly entrenched as a starter and nickel linebacker. Keenan Robinson also has seen a lot of time with the nickel defense. We get our first look at him this week as he missed last week with an injury. Devon Kennard was very quiet in the first preseason game. B.J. Goodson had a mostly positive game and was in on a lot of tackles, but he needs to show more in coverage. This appears to be a deep group, but are there any consistent play makers?

The secondary is shaking up to be a strong unit. Eli Apple (leg) made the trip but it remains to be seen if he plays. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Janoris Jenkins weren’t even tested in the preseason opener. Ben McAdoo said rookie free safety Darian Thompson was virtually perfect in his assignments. I’d like to see more flash out of Landon Collins. The Giants invested a high #2 in him. The nickel corner spot has been dramatically upgraded with the addition of Leon Hall. With Leon McFadden out, Donte Deayon should see a lot of action, and possibly Bennett Jackson, at corner. I still don’t have a good sense of whether or not the Giants have an NFL-caliber back-up safeties. Nat Berhe, Cooper Taylor, Mykkele Thompson, and Andrew Adams all had their ups and downs last week. This is an important game for them.

NEW YORK GIANTS ON SPECIAL TEAMS:
The one-game suspension of Josh Brown and ensuing media controversy about his domestic violence past may be upsetting the apple cart here. Is Tom Obarski the guy you want kicking against the Cowboys with the game on the line in the opener? Will the media storm surrounding Brown die away or force the team’s hand? Often unrecognized by fans is that the Giants have a heck of a punter in Brad Wing now. That was a good trade last year. Team punt coverage last week was very shoddy and needs to improve.

FROM THE COACH’S MOUTH:
Ben McAdoo on the Second Preseason Game: “It’s good to get the first group out there. A chance to knock the rust off. We played a few snaps in that first game but to get out there with Eli and Odell and get the whole group together and work the instincts. Anticipation is exciting.”

THE FINAL WORD:
The Giants were too sloppy last week. Hopefully that starts getting cleaned up as we progress towards the regular-season opener. Mike Sullivan called the plays. Will that continue? Who will be the middle linebacker? Who is the #3 wide receiver on this team? If Landon Collins or Darian Thompson get hurt, who is the primary back-up at safety?

Aug 192016
 
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Aug 182016
 
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Rashad Jennings, New York Giants (August 12, 2016)

Rashad Jennings – © USA TODAY Sports Images

GIANTS WAIVE/INJURED MATT SMALLEY…
The New York Giants have waived/injured cornerback Matt Smalley, who dislocated his shoulder in practice earlier this week. The Giants signed Smalley as a rookie free agent after he impressed as a tryout player during the May mini-camp.

NEW YORK GIANTS INJURY REPORT…
New York Giants linebacker J.T. Thomas (hamstring) remains on the Physically-Unable-to-Perform (PUP) List.

Wide receiver Victor Cruz (groin), wide receiver Geremy Davis (hamstring), tight end Will Johnson (burner), left guard Justin Pugh (shoulder), defensive end Kerry Wynn (groin), cornerback Eli Apple (strained leg muscle), and cornerback Leon McFadden (bruised lower leg) did not practice.

“(Pugh is) making some progress,” said Head Coach Ben McAdoo.

AUGUST 18, 2016 NEW YORK GIANTS PRACTICE REPORT…
Some snippets from various media sources:

  • Bobby Hart continued to work with the first-team at left guard in place of the injured Justin Pugh.
  • Wide receiver Kadron Boone caught a deep pass from quarterback Logan Thomas.
  • Bennett Jackson and newly-signed Joe Powell served as the third-team cornerback tandem.
  • Jasper Brinkley worked with the first-team at middle linebacker; Keenan Robinson received first-team snaps at linebacker with the nickel defense.
  • The first-team wide receivers were Odell Beckham, Sterling Sheppard, and Tavarres King in some sets. Myles White also worked with Beckham and Sheppard.
  • Cornerback Janoris Jenkins intercepted quarterback Ryan Nassib off of a bobbled attempted catch by wide receiver Darius Powe, but Jenkins was flagged for holding on the play. (VIDEO)
  • Under pressure, quarterback Logan Thomas hit wide receiver Tavarres King deep for a touchdown against double coverage.
  • Quarterback Logan Thomas hit tight end Jerell Adams down the left sideline.
  • Linebacker Jasper Brinkley intercepted quarterback Ryan Nassib on the goal line during 7-on-7 drills.
  • Wide receiver Anthony Dable continues to improve, adjusting well to the football.
  • The first-team dime defense included defensive linemen Jason Pierre-Paul, Owamagbe Odighizuwa, and Olivier Vernon; linebackers Keenan Robinson and Jonathan Casillas; and defensive backs Janoris Jenkins, Trevin Wade, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie, Darian Thompson, Leon Hall, and Landon Collins.

HEAD COACH BEN MCADOO…
The transcript of Ben McAdoo’s press conference on Thursday is available in The Corner Forum while the video is available at Giants.com.

THE PLAYERS SPEAK…
Transcripts and video clips of the media sessions with the following players are available in The Corner Forum and at Giants.com:

ARTICLES…

WHAT’S UP NEXT…
There is no media availability on Friday as the team will be traveling to Buffalo for Saturday’s preseason game against the Bills.